Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Mixed Berries with Orange Custard Sauce

Treat yourself to an elegant dessert that won’t derail you from your nutrition goals. Fruit by itself is an excellent choice, but you can dress it up by making an egg-based custard sauce that’s spiced up with pepper and orange. It sounds like an odd match, but the hint of pepper adds a nice contrast to the fruit. You will dirty a few pans, but the process is simple and the result is a dessert that’s ready for company. You can also make the sauce several hours earlier and chill until ready; just whisk again before serving.

Makes 4 Servings

2 pints mixed berries (strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries)
3 egg yolks
1 tablespoon agave nectar
1 tablespoon orange-flavored liqueur (like Cointreau)
½ teaspoon coarsely ground peppercorns
Sea salt
1 teaspoon orange zest, divided
¼  cup canned full-fat coconut milk, cold

Double boiler. You can make a set by finding a stainless steel bowl that fits loosely inside of a saucepan. Add several inches of water to the saucepan.

Ice bath: Fill another bowl larger than your mixing bowl with ice water.

Slice the strawberries and combine with remaining berries. Cover and refrigerate.

Beat the egg yolks and agave nectar in a stainless steel bowl until well combined.  Stir in the orange liqueur.

Place the mixture over the double boiler pan that contains the water. Heat to boiling. Whisk the egg mixture until it becomes pale yellow and thickens, about 5 minutes. (The mixture should fall in ribbons from a spoon.) Turn off heat. Stir in the pepper, a dash of salt, and half of the orange zest. Place the bowl into the ice bath to cool.

Whisk the coconut milk until slightly frothy. Mix gently into the egg custard. Spoon onto the top of individual servings of berries. Garnish with a remaining orange zest.

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